Avnet, Infor Join iManifest EMEA Program
October 26, 2009 Dan Burger
The iManifest initiative in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) gained momentum last week by adding some heavyweight corporate entities to the roster. For iManifest to climb the ladder of success, representation and financial backing by high-end companies is almost a requirement. iManifest Japan, the oldest and most well-developed of the iManifest initiatives, has achieved widespread support from the ISV community in Japan, including some big names. EMEA’s program just took a big step up.
Martin Fincham, leader of the iManifest EMEA band, happily noted that Avnet, an IBM master reseller, and Infor, one of the largest business software companies in the world and a major player in the IBM i ERP arena, have joined iManifest EMEA. Fincham, in his My Midrange Meddle blog, says he is hoping the participation of these two companies will encourage other large ISVs to rally around the i.
“I certainly expect that Avnet’s extensive relationships within the IBM business partner community will prove fruitful in soliciting further support,” he writes. “I have worked with the Avnet folks in the past and have been impressed with what they can achieve with just one phone call.”
“Likewise, with Infor’s support, I hope we will witness more active involvement from the other packaged application providers who have so far been conspicuous by their absence,” Fincham adds. He points out that the iManifest supporter list is dominated by infrastructure, tools, and utility providers rather than application vendors.
As Fincham sees it, the iManifest objectives are closely aligned with the current policies of organizations like Avnet and Infor.
“I can tell you that the general manager for Infor System i in EMEA, Paul Field, did his homework within IBM before returning my call and he received positive feedback. Likewise, a Power Systems i product manager sat in on my meeting with Avnet last week and was not only supportive, but also invited me to present the iManifest initiative at an IBM business partner event in the U.K. next month. I would say that Avnet takes very seriously its obligation to develop and support the IBM i community, particularly in regions like the UK where they are now the exclusive distributor.”
Fincham is the general manager of application modernization tool maker LANSA‘s EMEA region. Not surprisingly given Fincham’s leadership role, LANSA–one of the largest independent vendors of IBM i development tools and enabling software–is one of the early contributors to the iManifest EMEA efforts. The company also demonstrated early involvement with the iManifest in Japan and the United States. Gordon Davies, a vice president at LANSA’s Asia/Pacific operations, is one of the iManifest leaders in that region.
iManifest Japan has the lead on EMEA and the United States. It’s been recruiting members for more than a year and has more than 70 companies involved. That list includes high-end IBM business partners and IBM itself has become involved in activities. It has an advisory board and seven special interest group committees. The developments in EMEA and the United States hope to duplicate the success in Japan.